My name’s Quark. I spent a billion years by myself in outer space. It was cold. And lonely.
I was so happy to finally wind up on Earth. Never a dull day. I’m always on the move. It can be tiring, but it’s fascinating.
I’m a gregarious sort and now enjoy a very active love life, coupling frequently with various other subatomic bits and pieces.
For awhile I was part of a glucose molecule. Then I helped make up an iron atom on the fifth floor of an office building in Baltimore. Alas, it was torn down a few decades later.
For awhile after that I was in this locomotive. You’d think that would be fun, but the engine was hot, uncomfortable and noisy.
So I hoped for a new home. Be careful what you wish for. I was envious of Pedro the proton, who was part of a gold atom. He was very proud, and somewhat arrogant. But guess what? Now he’s part of a long-chain organic molecule in the middle of a cow plop on Farmer Bertram’s dairy farm. I’m envious no more.
I was sore for awhile last year after a photon from that lovely spiral galaxy M81 rammed into me. I know it had to travel for 12 million years to get here and must have been very tired, but it seemed from the force of the impact that it was still moving at the speed of light.
But that was nothing compared with my job at the Large Hadron Collider in Europe. They sent me flying around a giant circle deep underground and then smashed me into a lead ion. Oh the aches!
My next job should be easier. I’m to report for duty to Milan in Italy. I’ll become part of the left humerus of a cute little bambino who was conceived last week.
Better start learning Italian.